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Auto-Updating WordPress – core, plugins, themes?

I was surprised to see that my big client’s LIVE website was automatically updated to WP 5.0.1. It appears my client is letting SiteGround’s auto updater do this. What is your philosophy of allowing WordPress automatic updates vs. doing them manually?

I see WPBeginner describes how we can fine tune the type of auto updates by installing the Easy Updates Manager plugin:

Easy Updates Manager

It’s highly rated, does anyone have experience with this plugin, or recommend a different plugin, or would you rather set variables in wp-config.php to configure the auto updates?

WordPress default is to auto update WP core minor updates only. However you can control: whether to automatically update plugins, themes, WP core MAJOR updates, or disallow ALL auto updates.

More info on this topic, including pros and cons of auto updating, can be found here:
https://www.wpbeginner.com/wp-tutorials/how-to-disable-automatic-updates-in-wordpress/

Note that the likelihood of a WordPress update breaking your website can depend on whether you’ve modified core WordPress files of your website, or whether you have a LOT of plugins which can conflict with each other.

My preference is to apply ANY update manually, at a time of my choosing, so I can backup before, apply the updates, then check the website. But that’s time consuming. Has anyone experienced a WordPress (or plugin) update that broke a website? What turned out to be the cause?

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